Sports: On and Off the Field

15 May

One pre-requisite for a progressive society is enabling for a balanced growth of the youth population. This cannot be achieved without appropriate attention to development of physical attributes – and sports is an integral component of this.In the words of George A. Sheehan, the famous runner and author of “Running & Being: The Total Experience” : Sports is where an entire life can be compressed into a few hours, where the emotions of a lifetime can be felt on  an acre or two of ground, where a person can suffer and die and rise again on six miles of trails through a New York City park.  Sport is a theatre where sinner can turn saint and a common man become an uncommon hero, where the past and the future can fuse with the present.  Sport is singularly able to give us peak experiences where we feel completely one with the world and transcend all conflicts as we finally become our own potential.The dictionary defines ‘sport’ as a recreational or competitive activity which involves physical skill, intellectual acumen, and often luck, which is an integral part of human nature. We are quite unambiguous with the tutelage of sports. But this extends not only to physical fitness but also to cerebral vigor.Sport is not just  about learning how to run or learning how to swim or dunk a basket-ball into the hoop, but finding the very best in ourselves. We learn endurance, perseverance, camaraderie, tolerance, an aggressive spirit, determination, a healthy sense of competitiveness, become able to take all things reverse in our stride, learn to make quick but not hasty decisions, and of course emphasize our physical and mental robustness. These are qualities which will take us far in life.Sport is paradoxical; it is hard work but fun, it may be painful or pleasurable, we can either win or lose. The core value of sport is unlike any other, since no matter how hard we fall or how badly we lose, sport teaches us to get up and give a congratulatory handshake to our opponent and then have another go. Forgive me for my perception but I think that sports is not just about giving others the pleasure of watching you or your team win or lose, but it is about attaining self-satisfaction  and knowing that you gave it your very best shot.In sport you don’t have to be perfect! You don’t need two legs to compete in a race, you don’t need arms to swim – you are accepted however you are as long as you believe in yourself.Sport brings out the very best in us – making us push ourselves to the very limits of our endurance, and teaches us the art of playing as a team member. Life teaches us many lessons but there are some that can only be learnt on a sports field and cannot be substituted for by any classroom, or by any teacher – and this is important for any developing, growing youth population.Nanki Singh is a Class 10 student at Modern School Vasant Vihar in New Delhi. She loves reading, writing, photography – and holds a Senior Diploma in Indian Classical Vocal Music. She’s also a swimmer and a track & field athlete in her spare time!

One Response to “Sports: On and Off the Field”

  1. rakov June 14, 2014 at 7:01 am #

    Great article!

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